Wednesday, August 29, 2012

First Day of School 2012

So, for the first time I actually thought to capture the kids on the first day of school!  I've been meaning to do this for quite some time :)

The Professor (never can get a "normal" expression on him)

Velcro Boy


And because he's just soooo cute...

He's trying to get Doodlebug's puppy.

Monday, August 20, 2012

baby update

 He really likes his sippy cup
 He started by pulling up on people, and kept pulling up.  But just on people.  People big and small.  He has just recently started pulling up on furniture.  Cribs, tables, couches.  He hasn't yet discovered that he can pull up on bookcases, though he has discovered the books themselves.  He has tried out the laundry basket (nearly empty, not a pretty picture), and the basket of his toys (also not a pretty sight).
 Pumpkin's side of the room.  I know, there's an empty spot in the collage.  I had to reprint and it's just come in.
I'm such a happy boy when I'm doing what mommy doesn't want me to do :)

Sunday, August 19, 2012

2012-2013 planning post

Warning:  very long post ahead! 

We're planning on starting our school year on August 27th and working for 34 weeks, finishing on or about July 12th.  We school year round, taking a week off every 4 weeks or so.  2 weeks at Christmas and Holy Week/Easter.  This year we have a family vacation planned to the Smokey Mountains to see fall leaves.  We school 4 days a week, taking Wednesday off.  This works extremely well for us.  It allows time to get work done, but a day for shopping, errands, doctor's visits, household projects, etc.

A few years ago, I got an idea off a blog about planning a school year with Post-It's.  I thought about it, and it just seemed like a really good idea.  I only had 2 students at the time, and it worked great!  The world has gotten more complicated :)

I have columns for each child on each day (Monday for each, Tuesday, etc).  In years past I've put the kids down the side and the days across the top.  Down the side are the times.  Each Post-It has the subject written on it.

This year when I went to plan, I was going to just lay out the Post-It's on the desk.  I finally got it cleaned off and it's big enough :)  But hubby was going to work on schedules for work and I didn't want him to mess it up to be in his way.  In looking around for another way to do it, I found a board that is going to be used for another purpose.  Perfect!

I was planning on making a household schedule after I got the school schedule done, but everything just started flowing.  So, I let it flow around the school schedule :)

The Plan...  (do you hear God laughing???)

The Professor ~ 4th grade (though he's doing mostly 5th grade work)
Math ~ Math U See level Epsilon.  The focus is fractions.
Religion ~ Faith and Life 4
      reread of Baltimore Catechism 1
      Stories of the Saints and celebrating the Liturgical year
      Catholic Tales for Boys and Girls
      More Catholic Tales
      Rare Catholic Stories
Science ~ Finish Physics
       Exploring Creation with Anatomy & Notebooking Journal  (I'm really excited about this program.)
       We ordered the lab kit from Rainbow Resources  so doing the experiments should be a lot of fun.                 There are a lot of supplies called for in this program.  I'm also thinking about getting models of the                 heart,  the eye, and the ear
World History ~ Connecting with History book 2  63 BC to 1066 AD.  He'll be working at the  Grammar
        level, reading lots of books and completing several projects.
American History ~ We'll be covering the 1600's and 1700's.  I have 5 units planned:
       American Government~ this is a brief overview of how our government works.  I'm going to tie it in with
      the upcoming election.
       The Colonists~ The Pilgrims as well as the other colonies that have settled here.
       Colonies ~ how the colonies were established.
       The Revolutionary War
       The Constitution ~ The conventions, writing, the signers. 

Geography ~ We'll be completing the rest of the states in order of statehood and completing our
Map Skills ~ level D
Writing with Ease ~ level 1  The Professor has been having trouble summarizing and narrating from his
          reading, though he answers questions without difficulty.  Hopefully this will help.
Grammar ~ Language of God level D
Vocabulary ~ 240 Vocabulary Words 4th Grade Kids Need To Know.
Art ~ Drawing Basics 
         ArtPac 2 

Velcro Boy ~ 2nd grade
Math ~ Math U See level Beta
Religion ~  Faith and Life 2
              Baltimore Catechism 0
              Celebrating the Liturgical year and Stories of the Saints
              Devotional Stories for Little Folks & Devotional Stories Too
             We'll also be preparing for First Communion, so I'm sure there'll be some projects :)
Science ~ Behold & See 2.  We've been using the Exploring Creation series with The Professor, but I 
             don't think it will hold Velcro Boy's interest.  In reviewing this, I think it's just perfect.  I'll also 
             supplement with other books and we'll be dong the experiments.
World History ~ Connecting with History book 2, he'll be doing the Beginner level.
American History ~ same as The Professor, just with books geared to his level.
Geography ~ Same and above, just doing a sticker book instead of a scrapbook and cooking projects!
Phonics ~ Reading Eggs
Writing with Ease ~ also level 1
Spelling ~ All About Spelling level 1
Art ~ Art Pac 1
          various projects I have around the house

Doodlebug ~ Kindergarten  (like the Professor, this kid is too smart)
Lucky little Doodlebug gets to walk the Alphabet Path (again)!!!!  I say again, because he tagged along when Velcro Boy walked it 2 years ago.  It's going to be so much fun (and work) and fun, but so worth it!
Math ~ Math U See Primer.  Since he already has a good grasp on the work in this level, I'm sure he'll fly
    through and move on to Alpha.
Religion ~ with Velcro Boy
Science ~ with Velcro Boy and alphabet themed reading
World History ~ with Velcro Boy
American History ~ with Velcro Boy (Doodlebug loves to read, so there's no getting rid of him when a book 
        is out)
Geography ~ with Velcro Boy
Phonics ~ Reading Eggs 
Handwriting ~ Catholic Heritage Handwriting level K 
Art ~ Glitter letters
          coloring pages (saints, virtues, and alphabet)
Alphabet Path ~ a new letter every week or so
          a Mrs. Applebee story
          An Alphabet of Catholic Saints
          My ABC Bible Verses
          different animals and topics each week based on the alphabet letter we're covering
          several kitchen projects

Pumpkin ~ 
learning to walk
learning to talk
learning to climb stairs
learning to dress himself
learning to feed himself
learning to handle a cup
learning not to eat the books!

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Velcro Boy turns 7!

(a week ago)    I'll spare you the "where did the time go" rant that has become such a part of my life.  I guess it comes from having my two oldest have birthdays and having a (quickly) growing baby at the same time.  To say nothing of the 4 year old that seems to have grown up overnight.

Since we had the party 2 weeks ago, no cake today, but he did have some presents from my parents to open...

 Lego walkie talkies (unfortunately they don't work well - constant static on one unit.  We're working with the company to get it replaced)
 "spy watch".  Tells the time in 100 (or maybe just 9) time zones.

Boys and their trucks :)

And the Professor's new cut (though he could use another by now, sigh)

Friday, August 10, 2012

The Professor is 9!

We had the party a few days ago, but The Professor agreed to have his cake on his actual birthday since we were so busy.

He had a Formula One theme.  The frosting came out more pink than red :(  The color came out more as the cake sat for a day or two.  Yummy leftovers!

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Crawling practice

 Let me show you how this is done, big brother!
 First you move your hand forward...
 Hey!  Don't run me over!
Hmmm...I guess you really do know how to do this.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Birthday 2012

When God sent me the blessing we refer to as The Professor and Velcro Boy, he also send me a challenge.  He sent them 2 years and 10 days apart.  Given that their birthdays are so close and hubby's limited availability on weekends, we have a family party for them together.  Did I also mention that hubby's birthday is 6 days after Velcro Boy's birthday?

We had their party a bit early this year due to scheduling difficulties.  They each wanted a different theme this year.  Last year they agreed on one theme.  The Professor wanted a Formula One theme and Velcro Boy wanted dirt.  So, we compromised :)

 I mentioned hubby's birthday...  If you look closely, he managed to take off a wheel, knocking out some candy.  This was one stubborn pinata!
 Hmmm...what can I buy?
 OOHH, I have one too.
 Snap Circuits!

 Recycling truck!
 Amazon wraps and gift tags gifts!
 He's already putting his Snap Circuits away :)
 The "Dirt cake".  Oreo cookie crust, chocolate pudding, whipped cream and Oreo topping.  Yummy!
A great wind blew :)

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Assorted kid photos

 He loves to be able to do this!
 We got the kids their "back to school" haircuts (finally).

 Is that thing on?
Let me see how it tastes!

Monday, August 6, 2012

As bad as cats

Have you ever noticed how many things cats and kids have in common??

You can't just have one.  They're like potato chips in this respect too :)

They tend to get into things.

They go around on the floor on all 4's.

And they like toys that are free.  Like cats, give kids an empty box and step back...

And they are so incredibly curious!  To the point of not for their own good...

There is now a gate across those stairs.